3 Phases of Blog Growth or How to Love Blogging
Starting and maintaining a high quality or flagship blog is not really easy.
You need perseverance and the will to keep on blogging no matter what happens.
Yet that’s still not enough to keep your blog growing. You need passion.
You need to love blogging!
I really do. I don’t need extra motivation to blog or something.
What Growing a Blog is About
What I need though, like other bloggers, is a strategy or simply put adjustment to the 3 phases of blog growth.
You just can’t blog the same way for a completely new blog as for an established blog.
When is a blog established? A blog that already has a significant audience of regular readers and ideally subscribers. is established.
The best way to establish yourself as an authority and to grow an audience is to create a so called flagship blog.
What is a flagship blog? A flagship blog is a blog created upon the premise of unique content of high value able to boost your online reputation.
A flagship blog is a resource people will link to, subscribe and recommend to others on social media.
I want to outline the 3 main phases of flagship blog growth and how to deal with them in terms of
- content creation
- posting frequency
- topical relevancy
- social media engagement
- guest blogging
Sounds intimidating? Well it is to some extent. When you know upfront what to expect the task is less daunting though.
The 3 Phases of Blog Growth
What are the 3 main phases of blog growth? These 3 are embedded in a holistic SEO 2.0 strategy including true blue social media participation.
1. Initial Frenzy
The initial frenzy is a hilarious phase of blogging. It’s like a new love affair. You’re agitated all of the time and can’t sleep well.
- You blog daily or at least as often as you can.
- You write guest posts for more popular blogs
- You try everything, several social media, widgets, plugins and maybe even WordPress themes.
- You create highly relevant topical content geared towards the social media of your choice audience
- You link out generously and you praise other established as well as new bloggers like you who you admire.
- You watch your first social media shares eagerly
- and you are are glad about the first 100 visitors daily, then the first 100 subscribers
2. Establishing Mode
The establishing mode phase is a cool down phase. Like in a love affair you now discover whether you truly love blogging.
You take a step back and analyze. You take a look at your audience and the workload of blogging. Now you need a focus and some lasting benefit of blogging.
After the initial frenzy ends there comes the establishing mode. It may be after 3 months or after 6 but it will come.
You will notice it by the fact that you are posting less without really knowing why. You will more often take a look at your watch to find out how much time you spend with blogging.
- You blog less often but write longer posts
- You elaborate on topics you already covered
- You focus on your existing audience, you may have up to 1000 subscribers
- Your social media traffic either tends to become lower or you stop caring that much
- You think twice before you guest blog, some people might offer you money already for guest blogging
- You already have a significant network of like minded peers across several social media and people know your name or recognize your avatar
- You think more often about making money with your blog to justify the time spent on it
- People you have never heard of link to you in best of lists or as a source (“via”)
3. Final Boost
The final boost is in a love affair the equivalent of marriage. Now you decide whether you abandon your beloved one or if you’re really in it whatever it takes.
You can do it you just need to want it. If your heart jumps each time you start typing a blog post you can really become one of those exceptionally successful bloggers.
- You want to reach new heights each time you start a blog post, you want to write a short one but it does not work, you have so much to share
- You are the first or one of the first to cover or uncover topics others haven’t t thought of yet
- Your traffic is higher than in the initial phase even without getting shared on social media
- The no referrer crowd becomes the biggest traffic factor in your stats on days you are not on social media
- Your blog posts get shared on different social media just minutes or hours after you published them
- People you never heard of admire you or ask you questions
- Once you share something on social media you get an initial boost of 10 – 20 people recognizing it’s you and checking out your share because they trust your choices
- You get job offers via or because of your blog regularly
How to reach the final boost phase? Or what to do while in it? You can go pro (as in professionally blogging) for instance.
Then you create immensely valuable posts that will go bananas on social sites. Just think about Brian Dean of Backlinko!
You can create an ebook, online course or you just venture into other media like audio or video. You may even start a second (flagship) blog.
You can start speaking at conferences. You will consider a professional custom blog redesign.
- You want to keep inspiring people forever.
- You want to empower the people.
- You want to evangelize them.
You even believe it because you made it so far. It’s wonderful!
How Does it Feel to Be in Phase Three?
I assume being in the final boost phase means having 1000+ subscribers and I already experienced the ramifications of it to some extent.
Will I get the final boost that will propel me to the next level? How will I do it? I’m not sure yet, I already see phase 3 unfolding.
Maybe it’s not about doing anymore but watching it happen by now. Anyway, blogging is my true love!
* Images: Classics in Lego by Balakov.
Nice post man and thanks for the link, really need to start focusing more on the blog now that phase one of the eBook is out there.
Need to catch up to your feed count :P
Yeah thanks Glen. btw. this one was meant to be a short post. Damn, you simply can’t suppress love!
Ha… great post Tad. You have nailed my initial frenzy phase on the head. Spot on. I look forward to the establishing mode. Something tells me it’ll take a while…
Great post – looks like you’ve been there and done it (or you’re doing it!).
I’m still in the initial frenzy stage – feeling guilty for not blogging yesterday!
Maybe you’ll discover a new 4th phase when you’re fully at the 3rd phase?
Thanks for the links and the mention. I agree with everything you’ve laid out even though I have never thought about quite like you have. I think your statement is right about not needing any more motivation because you just have it. I feel the same way about myself.
I guess I’m in establishing mode – mostly, anyway.
Why are so many people using Lego photos now? You, Maki, Darren Rowse…
Great post! I found that your phases were right on with what I have been experiencing with each of my blogs.
Right, in whatever things we are doing, we should do it with love. Same with blogging, as what you’ve said, if you want to make your blog successful you should love working with it.
You know how this could go viral? Turn it into a quiz with a widget featuring how people scored. I’ll bet a whole bunch of bloggers would identify, as the comments above (and my own feeligns) show, and you’d get boatloads of links. The trick of course, is to not cross Google’s line on what is acceptable widgetbait, but then you know that…
Thanks all. Strangely enough this post wasn’t very succesful although it seems to strike a chord.
I think these phases are probably more pronounced if it’s your first blog – particularly the initial frenzy, as if you’ve done it before, you know what’s coming later… sort of like real life too, I suppose!
linkdan, every new love is like the first one for me! SEO 2.0 is NOT my first blog :-)
Damn they are awesome! Tahnk you for the post!
[…] 3 Phases of Flagship Blog Growth or How to Fall in Love with Blogging: Tad explains that perseverance is important to keep your blog going strong. […]
Great post – it’s like any business you build. It starts as a baby, becomes a toddler, then a teenager and finally matures. The question is does it get old or not? The answer mostly depends on how much care you take of it..
I like the second phase best. It is so true you start to post less and not worry about social traffic. This is the crunch time you have to buckle down and work on blog find new topics and keep getting more people to subscribe to feed. I think how people handle this phase determines how they will do in the long run. Give up or buckle down and get to work.